Thursday, November 17, 2011

Age Appropriate Chores

Yesterday I spoke about the chore system we are starting to use for our son.  I am a firm believer in children learning work and responsibility from a young age.  Whether or not you want to pay them for their work is a personal decision.

Please note that the handling of chores might vary with your child's maturity level and any physical limitations your child might have, so the ones I'm laying out are from experience and just to be used as a general guideline or a place to start. Regardless, these are tasks that may be age appropriate for your little ones.

1-2 Years (I told you - we start early)
  • Picking up Toys
  • Putting clothes in hamper/laundry basket
  • Putting dry food in pet bowl using a plastic cup
  • Brushing/flossing their teeth (with assistance)
  • Putting items in trashcan
  • Picking out their clothes for the next day (with guidance for weather considerations of course)
  • Help make their beds
  • Clean up spills they make
  • Put things back where they found them

3-4 Years (including any listed above)
  • Making their beds
  • Brushing teeth/flossing (supervised but unassisted)
  • Putting food and water in pet bowl using a plastic cup
  • Dusting (use a sock on their hand)
  • Dress themselves with minimal assistance.
  • Bringing in lightweight items from the car
  • Start learning how to sweep or holding dust pan for parent (no, the sweeping won't be pretty at this point, but they have to learn somehow), use dry mop on floors
  • "Help" wash the car
  • Help water plants
  • Clean own setting at table

5-6 Years (including any listed above)

  • Put away laundry
  • Sort laundry (colors/whites/etc)
  • Fold towels, socks, etc (some might even be able to clothing)
  • Sweep
  • Clip coupons
  • Clean windows (inside)/glass doors with supervision
  • Clean walls/baseboards, doors, doorknobs
  • Help wash the car
  • Water plants
  • Weeding (with supervision)
  • Hang up towels in bathroom
  • Pet's food and water
  • Load dishwasher (with supervision)
  • Dictate thank you notes for parents
  • Set table
  • Fix bowl of cereal
  • Prepare school items (backpack, homework, etc) for next day
  • Getting the mail

7-9 Years (including any listed above)
  • Pet's food, water, and exercise
  • Vacuum rooms
  • Wet mop rooms
  • Wash windows (inside) and doors without supervision
  • Put away dishes from dishwasher
  • Help prepare food (with supervision)
  • Pour drinks
  • Make PB&J sandwiches
  • Get own snacks
  • Help use coupons at store
  • Help put away groceries
  • Take out trash
  • Rake leaves
  • Weeding
  • Answer phone
  • Write thank you notes
  • Dry dishes by hand
  • Learn how washer and dryer work
  • Clean own room entirely
  • Clean mirrors
  • Help pack lunch for following day
  • Basic organization
  • Prepare own bath

10-14 Years (including any listed above)
  • Solely responsible for homework (parents can check over, but should not have to remind)
  • Get self up and ready in morning
  • Wash dishes by hand
  • Launder own clothes
  • Iron clothes (with supervision at first)
  • Learn to fold fitted sheet (yes...this is a skill)
  • Wash windows inside (and out if your windows fold inward)
  • Change sheets on bed
  • Deep clean own room
  • Put away all groceries
  • Change light bulbs
  • Clean kitchen (with supervision at first)
  • Clean bathroom (with supervision at first)
  • Mow the lawn
  • Help make grocery list
  • Cook a basic meal (reheating, grilled cheese & soup, etc)
  • Bake cookies and cakes
  • Older of group can baby sit in some states
  • Prepare lunches for following day
  • Change a litter box (for cat owners)
  • Give dog a bath
  • Basic home repair (painting, hanging picture, etc)
  • Learn basic car repair/maintenance

15-18 Years (including any listed above)
  • Cook a meal
  • Landscaping (edging, trimming, etc)
  • Run errands to grocery store
  • Make shopping list
  • Run carpool errands for young siblings
  • Baby sit
  • Purchase own clothes
  • Maintain their vehicle (gas, oil, possibly insurance)
  • Deep cleaning appliances (oven, fridge, defrost freezers, etc)
  • Check and replace vacuum cleaner bags
  • Clean gutters
  • Chop wood
  • Clean fireplace
What do you think?  Any I should add?  Any I should shift around? 

Photo credit: hortongrou


  1. Wow! I think you are officially the first person to pin anything of mine! THANKS!